Anne Frank Pen Pal Museum Receives WWII Boxcar

Excitement was stirred up on Friday, August 18th, as a large, World War II era boxcar traveled through the eastern portion of the state.

This boxcar was lowered onto tracks just outside the Danville Station, which is home to the Anne Frank Pen Pal Museum, and now serves as a hallowing historical piece that reminds museum goers of different times in a distant place. However, that world doesn’t seem so far away with letters from the past providing a glimpse into a world on the verge of world war.

In the fall of 1939, a Danville teacher began a pen pal exchange for her class. Miss Birdie Mathews provided a list for her students where they were able to pick a name out. Juanita Wagner, a ten-year-old girl, chose a girl that was her age and lived across the world in Amsterdam. This young girl was named Anne Frank. Danville is one of just two places in the world to view the pen pal letters.

The boxcar is similar to one that the Frank family, and millions of others, would have been transported on to a concentration camp.

This boxcar, now a permanent fixture in Danville, serves as a bridge that forms a connection between the previous century, and the present.